Definitions for painted turtle
This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word painted turtle
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
a freshwater turtle, Chrysemys picta, common in the U.S., having bright yellow markings on the head and neck and red markings on the margin of the carapace.
Category: Reptiles and Amphibians
Origin of painted turtle:
painted turtle, painted terrapin, painted tortoise, Chrysemys picta(noun)
freshwater turtles having bright yellow and red markings; common in the eastern United States
The painted turtle is the most widespread native turtle of North America. It lives in slow-moving fresh waters, from southern Canada to Louisiana and northern Mexico, and from the Atlantic to the Pacific. The turtle is the only species of the genus Chrysemys, which is part of the pond turtle family Emydidae. Fossils show that the painted turtle existed 15 million years ago. Four regionally based subspecies evolved during the last ice age. The adult painted turtle female is 10–25 cm long; the male is smaller. The turtle's top shell is dark and smooth, without a ridge. Its skin is olive to black with red, orange, or yellow stripes on its extremities. The subspecies can be distinguished by their shells: the eastern has straight-aligned top shell segments; the midland has a large gray mark on the bottom shell; the southern has a red line on the top shell; the western has a red pattern on the bottom shell. The turtle eats aquatic vegetation, algae, and small water creatures including insects, crustaceans, and fish. Although they are frequently consumed as eggs or hatchlings by rodents, canines, and snakes, the adult turtles' hard shells protect them from most predators. Reliant on warmth from its surroundings, the painted turtle is active only during the day when it basks for hours on logs or rocks. During winter, the turtle hibernates, usually in the muddy bottoms of waterways. The turtles mate in spring and autumn. Females dig nests on land and lay eggs between late spring and mid-summer. Hatched turtles grow until sexual maturity: 2–9 years for males, 6–16 for females.
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